Operation Homefront Announces Board of Directors Appointments

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The national nonprofit focused on supporting military families today announced the appointment of seven new members to its Board of Directors over the past year.

Operation Homefront, the national nonprofit focused on supporting military families, today announced the appointment of seven new members to its Board of Directors over the past year. The 4-star organization, as rated by Charity Navigator, provides a wide variety of programs and services to help families cope with a variety of challenges both while they are serving and as they transition to and reintegrate back in to the civilian sector.

“I’m incredibly pleased to welcome these leaders from diverse professions and industries who share in our singular mission of building strong, stable and secure military families,” said Catherine Blades, Operation Homefront board chair and senior vice president of Corporate Communications at Aflac. “Our military families do so much to protect the freedoms we, as Americans enjoy daily and they deserve our very best efforts to ensure they are able to thrive in the communities they have worked so hard to protect.”

“We are fortunate to have a very engaged team of directors who take time out of their schedules to be actively involved in the future of Operation Homefront,” said Brig Gen (ret) John I. Pray, Jr., president and CEO of Operation Homefront. “Together, their valuable expertise and leadership help us deliver impactful programs today as well as chart our course to better support military families in the future.”

Recent appointments to National Board of Directors include:

Steven Adkinson – First Vice President & Senior Advisor at Merrill Lynch Wealth Management. Adkinson has worked within investment management consulting since 2000, has 20 years of involvement in the nonprofit field with extensive experience in donor relations. Adkinson’s father and three of his uncles served in the military.

Angelo Lombardi – Former Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer at La Quinta Holdings Inc. Lombardi has over 25 years of experience as an executive in the hospitality industry. From 2006 to 2016 he held several senior positions with La Quinta Holdings, Inc. Prior to joining La Quinta, he spent 13-years with Red Roof Inns, Inc. in several positions including General Manager, Revenue Manager and Vice President of Operations.

Steven Mahon –General Counsel at SAIC. As SAIC’s senior legal adviser, Mahon leads legal, contracts, procurement and enterprise risk management across the corporation. His experience encompasses a broad spectrum of legal disciplines, including civil litigation, government contracting, military justice and corporate activities. A retired Army colonel, he served in the U.S. Army Judge Advocate General's Corps from 1986 to 2012, practicing law in a variety of roles on active duty and in the U.S. Army Reserve.

Brig. Gen. Linda Medler (USAF-Ret) – Cyber Director, Advanced Missile Systems at Raytheon. Medler retired from the Air Force in April 2014. She began her 30-year military service as a Marine at Parris Island, S.C., and ended her career as an Air Force flag officer at Fort Meade, Md. Medler served in a variety of positions during her military career, including three assignments on Staff of the Joint Chiefs. Her commands included a communications squadron, mission support group and an air base wing.

Bob McGowan – former Senior National Account Manager at Airgas. McGowan is actively involved both nationally and regionally for Operation Homefront, coordinating local Back-to-School Brigade™ school supply collections and Holiday Toy drives in the Pittsburgh region. A 45-time marathon runner, he is a team captain for Team Operation Homefront which raises funds for the organization’s transitional housing programs.    McGowan served in the Marine Corps during the Vietnam War.

Tyrone “Woody” Woodyard –Vice President, Communications at Sikorsky, a Lockheed Martin company. Woodyard leads integrated global strategic communications promoting Sikorsky’s innovative flight solutions that drive the company's business objectives. A retired Air Force colonel, Woodyard held several public affairs, strategic communications and government affairs leadership positions with the U.S. Air Force, including Chief, Legislative Liaison Programs, Secretary of the Air Force and executive positions with Pratt & Whitney and currently Lockheed Martin.

Jaime Zapata – Partner at GMMB. Zapata is a partner with one of the nation’s most respected communications firms, and has more than 20 years of experience in policy, issue-based advocacy and political and strategic communications. As deputy assistant secretary at the U.S. Labor Department, Zapata managed the department’s public affairs initiatives, providing strategic counsel to the Veterans' Employment Training Service (VETS) and to numerous other federal agencies.

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About Operation Homefront: A national nonprofit, Operation Homefront builds strong, stable, and secure military families so that they can thrive in the communities they have worked so hard to protect. With more than 3,200 volunteers nationwide, Operation Homefront has provided assistance to tens of thousands of military families its inception shortly after 9/11. Recognized for superior performance by leading independent charity watchdog groups, 92 percent of Operation Homefront’s expenditures go directly to programs that provide support to our military families. For more information, go to http://www.OperationHomefront.net.

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